Press Release: Women on Web Korea’s Official Twitter Account Suspended by Twitter
Twitter suspends abortion facilitator and advocacy group, Women on Web’s, Korean account without notification or reasoning.
For immediate release, October 10th, 2020
On September 11, 2020, Twitter suspended the Official Twitter Account for Women on Web Korea without giving any prior notification. Women on Web has since requested sufficient reasoning and guidance for reinstatement from Twitter Support but has yet to receive any response.
Due to the global outbreak of COVID-19, sexual and reproductive health services have been severely restricted, making the timing of this suspension especially troubling. Access to reliable information on contraceptives and abortion care is critical and by suspending Women on Web Korea’s account, Twitter is effectively limiting the circulation of safe and dependable information. The World Health Organization (WHO) has deemed abortion an essential service and has outlined guidance for preserving access during the COVID-19 outbreak. WHO also maintains medical abortion is safe to be self-administered up to 12 weeks of pregnancy without professional supervision.
In addition to the pandemic, Twitter’s banning of Women on Web Korea’s account also comes at a crucial moment as South Korea is expected to make significant reforms to its abortion laws by the end of 2020. On April 11, 2019, the Constitutional Court declared ‘the crimes of abortion’, represented in Article 269 and 270 of the Criminal Code, as unconstitutional and ordered a repeal by December 2020. Therefore, Women on Web Korea plays an indispensable role in sharing and engaging in the discourse surrounding the sexual and reproductive health rights movement in Korea. Due to Twitter’s unsupported suspension of Women on Web Korea’s account, Women on Web has been unable to fully participate in this pivotal conversation to implore lawmakers to fully decriminalize abortion.
Women on Web Korea demands Twitter reinstate the account in order to continue providing essential abortion access and information.